Review by VideoMaster

Reviewed: 06/20/07

Zombies. They Die And Come Back Wanting A Bite To Eat. Ungrateful Sons of Bit....Ahem. Right.

My Introduction
I bought Dead Rising for my Xbox 360 the Friday following my birthday that I got it for. I've always been a big lover of horror movies, and especially of George A. Romero's zombie films. This game had been one game I had waited years to see. Needless to say, you can imagine the excitement I felt the day I was in Wal-Mart waiting on my mother in 2006, checked out a video game magazine, and saw the section for Dead Rising.

This game was the actual reason I wanted an XBox 360. Yes, this game was the one, sole reason that I bought one. Of course I'm going to get more games for it and I have enjoyed playing the other game I have for it. But, I will not deny the fact about Dead Rising.

The Story - 10/10
Essentially, you play a journalist named Frank West. You have come to a town named Williamette and more specifically, the mall on a hunch that something big is going down. Upon arriving via helicopter, you notice the U.S. Army has blockaded the town. Shortly after, several military helicopters begin chasing you before your pilot drops you off at the mall.

You soon discover that the entire town has been overrun by zombies and you must survive the next three days in the zombie infested mall while you discover what is going on.

Your mission is rather simple. Find out what is going on, why there are zombies, and what made the zombies. The truth of what has happened must get out to the public. All this must be done within the seventy-two hour timeframe.

Graphics and Character Models - 10/10
The graphics are great. There's nothing quite like seeing blood being splattered every where when you kill a zombie. Unless of course you are hacking away at limbs and heads causing them to fly every which way. At the peak, the mall is literally jam-packed with zombies and repeating zombie models are few in-between. While you will see them, you won't find yourself plagued with the same character model for zombies. In fact, as a nice touch, occasionally you will actually encounter zombies of people you once saw as living earlier in the game.

Main Cast and Supporting Characters - 10/10
One of my favorite aspects of Dead Rising are the characters. Unlike in some games, every single character has his or her own unique personality. Each character even looks dramatically different and not carbon copies of others. This might not sound like much at first. But when one takes into account that there are 53 survivors you will encounter throughout the game, this is a very nice effort.

All the characters, including those survivors you have the choice of saving, will all interact interestingly. Some will react hostile to you at first, others are obviously terrified of what is happening, and others have simply gone insane at what is happening.

Psychopaths - 10/10
Zombies are not the only enemies you will encounter during your three day visit to Williamette Mall. During the course of the three days, you will encounter a number of psychopaths, or people driven insane by the zombie onslaught. These include a wide range of people. You will encounter such psychos as, but not limited to, a dual wielding chainsaw clown, a raincoat wearing cult, a Vietname vet, and a family of snipers just to name a few.

All of these characters are very interesting. A very few you will actually feel a bit sorry for when you watch their cutscenes.

Length - 10/10
The length is okay. In-game, the length of the game is seventy-hours. Upon reading this, you may be thinking, "Wow, that's great! This game will last for a long time." Of course that's not actually the real world length of the game as in real world time, this is only a total of six hours.

Replayability - 10/10
This game has quite a bit of replayability to it. If you're into getting this, the achievements alone will make for a lot of replaying. There's at least one achievement for Dead Rising that it will literally take you almost the entire game just to do it. And that's just doing this one achievement and nothing else.

Of course the achievements are not the only incentive to replay. There are six endings you can get.

Ways to Kill Zombies - 10/10
Dead Rising is sort of a free roam game. Especially while not doing a mission, you can roam all around the Williamette Mall. Of course, being that the mall is filled with zombies, the biggest thing you will do is find fun and random ways to kill our living dead friends. Who wants to cut grass when you can take that lawnmower and run over zombies? Then again, there's nothing quite like grabbing a Katana and chopping off various limbs or a chainsaw and slaughtering swarms of zombies.

Of course these are just a few of the fun ways to kill zombies. You can kill them in any number of ways.

Not hungry? Throw a pie in a zombie's face. Want to play some sports? Grab a soccer ball and kick some zombies with it. Or if baseball is more your thing, grab a bat and take a swing. Or grab a bowling ball and see if you can get a strike.

These are just a few of the many ways to take down a zombie.

Random Fun Stuff - 10/10
Of course, as a free roam game, killing zombies aren't all there is to do outside of missions. If you find a store you like, make your stand there. Grab anything and everything that isn't nailed down and build yourself a barricade. See how simple or elaborate of one you can make to keep the zombies out.

As a photojournalist, you'll also need some pictures of your ordeal. Try to get some interesting shots. There are four categories: Brutality, Erotica, Horror, and Dramatic. Get a shot just as you kill a zombie.

My Overall Opinion
Dead Rising is the second game that I bought for my Xbox 360. In my opinion, the biggest problem I had with the game was that there was no "pure" free roam mode. In the story mode, you have a seventy-two hour time limit, although this isn't actually a "problem" as it puts more effect into the story. There's also a mode called the infinity mode that almost is. But, in this mode, you still must worry about starving to death and must get food before your health fully depletes.

Again, this isn't that bad. But I just think that a pure free roam mode where you just survived against zombies as long as possible--maybe with no food at all as a compromise--would have been nice.

Nonetheless, Dead Rising is a very great game. If you're a zombie fan, especially of the original Dawn of the Dead, then this is a definite play for you. I won't suggest that you buy this game. I won't deny this just isn't a game for everyone, even among zombie lovers. But I will suggest renting it.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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